The UFC kicked off things for their debut in New Zealand with a ticket sales press conference in Auckland earlier this week.
The event featured main event fighters Nate Marquardt and James Te Huna, who will meet in a five-round middleweight contest. Tom Wright was also on hand.
Below are some comments made by Marquardt, Te Huna and Wright, along with a video replay of the presser.
“I’m focused on the fight no matter who it is or where it is,” said Marquardt, who is coming off a third straight loss after being finished by Hector Lombard.
It was a rough 2013 for Marquardt, as the former Strikeforce champion dropped the belt to Tarec Saffiedine in January and was knocked out in the first round by Jake Ellenberger. The Lombard loss came in October.
Te Huna (16-7) is making his 185-pound debut after back-to-back losses to Mauricio “Shogun” Rua and Glover Teixeira last year. Those defeats snapped a four-fight win streak for him.
“I dreamt about this from when I was a kid,” said Te Huna, who is a native of New Zealand, “to fight on my home soil is a big deal for me.”
Wright stated that “having the opportunity to come to New Zealand has always been on our radar.”